LumberJocks

Surprisingly Good

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Review by Tomcat1066 posted 2390 days ago 1592 views 0 times favorited 17 comments Add to Favorites Watch
Surprisingly Good No-picture-s No-picture-s Click the pictures to enlarge them

Black & Decker tools suck. That’s the general consensus from woodworkers the world over. After my Firestorm circular saw couldn’t rip a piece of 4/4 pine, I tend to agree. However, the Workmate is the exception.

This sweet little puppy is just the ticket for a new woodworker. In one little package, you get a workbench, a vise, and even saw horses. It’s fairly easy to assemble, but the instructions could be better. In an effort to put as few steps as possible on the instruction sheet, they combined steps. Still, if you take your time and don’t rush, you should be fine.

Now, this thing isn’t perfect. It doesn’t work well for hand planing, since it wants to tip over. For small pieces, that’s easy to overcome by just putting your foot on the leg plates. I haven’t tried longer pieces yet, but I suspect that it’ll be a serious challenge on them.

However, for power tool users, I really can’t think of much this little guy couldn’t handle. Not only that, but I can see this sucker getting used in all kinds of projects around the house. For the $35 I spent on this from the BORG, I just don’t think it can be beat.

The only regret I have is that I didn’t get the bigger model with the step at the bottom. Oh well…live and learn ;)

-- "Give me your poor tools, your tired steel, your huddled masses of rust." Yep, I ripped off the Statue of Liberty. That's how I roll!




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Tomcat1066

942 posts in 2427 days



17 comments so far

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mrtrim

1696 posts in 2511 days


#1 posted 2390 days ago

great review , these have been around quite a while but ive never had one probably because i see the name and just keep walking ! thats how i roll ! lol maybe ill reconsider this one . great post thanks

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Eric

873 posts in 2415 days


#2 posted 2390 days ago

Nice review! I’ve seen this sold at the Ace Hardware here (yes, they have Ace in Malaysia) but I don’t know what the price is. I have seen a $12 version sold in a department store here that would wobble if you rested your hand on it. No thanks!

-- Eric at http://adventuresinwoodworking.com

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Tomcat1066

942 posts in 2427 days


#3 posted 2390 days ago

Yeah, I don’t blame you there! If you’re going to get one, go with the original. Mine was pretty stable on concrete, so I suspect the ones at the Ace would do well.

-- "Give me your poor tools, your tired steel, your huddled masses of rust." Yep, I ripped off the Statue of Liberty. That's how I roll!

View cz29's profile

cz29

14 posts in 2418 days


#4 posted 2390 days ago

I have the largest version of this, and it’s pretty stable. Be careful if mail ordering though, as the packaging does not travel well. I got mine from Amazon, and they were good at getting a second out o me pretty quickly after the first one came to me destroyed. But for me, it’s perfect as I don’t have a shop, and this allows me to set up anywhere.

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Tomcat1066

942 posts in 2427 days


#5 posted 2390 days ago

cz,

Is it still stable while hand planing?

-- "Give me your poor tools, your tired steel, your huddled masses of rust." Yep, I ripped off the Statue of Liberty. That's how I roll!

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CharlieM1958

15688 posts in 2849 days


#6 posted 2390 days ago

Good review!

A word about Black & Decker: Their tools didn’t always suck. 20-25 years ago they made what they called their “professional” line, which were really good quality tools. My dad gave me a 1/4 sheet palm sander when my wife and I bought our first home in 1986. I’ve used that thing on countless projects, large and small, over the years, and it still looks and runs like new.

-- Charlie M. "Woodworking - patience = firewood"

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rikkor

11295 posts in 2506 days


#7 posted 2389 days ago

I got one for Christmas a few years ago. It has performed admirably for everything I have asked it to do.

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flippinfred

6 posts in 2466 days


#8 posted 2389 days ago

Tomcat….the little scissor-leg model is not as stable as the original with the collapsing platform and fold-under legs, which splay out at a 45 degree angle and create a large footprint. But….the plastic snap-lock assemblies that hold the legs out will get brittle and eventually break. The system still works, just a little harder to set up.

And yes, it will stand up to planing if set up on a level surface. I have used mine to plane deck boards, etc. I have
and use both and wouldn’t be without ‘em. They are great in the shop for mounting temporary infeed/outfeed
supports, etc. or anywhere you need clamping or additional work surface. You can also mount benchtop machines to plywood and attach cleats to the underside and clamp up in your workmate….very handy in the
field.

-- "Nothing difficult is ever easy".......anonymous, (and likely drunk)

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Zuki

1404 posts in 2708 days


#9 posted 2389 days ago

I have the same one Flippin. Three of the plastic “thingies” cracked and it is a pain to set up, but once set up it is stable. My top had gotten wet at one point in time and the boards have swelled. I will eventully replace it with some hardwood. great tool though.

-- BLOG - http://www.colorfulcanary.com/search/label/Zuki

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jsheaney

141 posts in 2619 days


#10 posted 2389 days ago

I’ve got the version with the two wheels on one side. When you fold it flat, it becomes a handtruck! Handy little bugger. I would not use it for handplaning, though. I use it as an assembly table or just another horizontal surface to put junk on next to my workbench.

-- Disappointment is an empty box full of expectation.

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MsDebbieP

18615 posts in 2792 days


#11 posted 2389 days ago

I have the one with the step… we use it all the time.

-- ~ Debbie, Canada (https://www.facebook.com/DebbiePribeleENJOConsultant)

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Tomcat1066

942 posts in 2427 days


#12 posted 2388 days ago

Is there anyone who doesn’t have one of these bad boys? ;)

-- "Give me your poor tools, your tired steel, your huddled masses of rust." Yep, I ripped off the Statue of Liberty. That's how I roll!

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lazyfiremaninTN

528 posts in 2584 days


#13 posted 2388 days ago

Since I am in the process of building a workbench, I am using mine as an assembly table along with my table saw. One of my next investments in it’s big brother.

-- Adrian ..... The 11th Commandment...."Thou Shalt Not Buy A Wobble Dado"

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Tomcat1066

942 posts in 2427 days


#14 posted 2388 days ago

Adrian,

That’s what I’m planning on using mine for when time to build my bench comes around!

-- "Give me your poor tools, your tired steel, your huddled masses of rust." Yep, I ripped off the Statue of Liberty. That's how I roll!

View Myron Wooley's profile

Myron Wooley

226 posts in 2527 days


#15 posted 2387 days ago

Costco was carrying the Workmate plastic collapsible stand a few months ago for thirty bucks. No clamping, but the leg height adjusts. 750# rating, so I bought one, and then another, until I had 6 or 7 of them. Gave one to my dad. Makes a real nice tool stand and emergency plywood holder. I have one under my Ridgid OSS, my Delta disk/belt sander, my 12” x 18” surface plate, one next to the lathe, and several more folded flat against the wall for when I need a quick bench. Inexpensive, multifunctional, and way underrated!

-- The days are long and the years are short...

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